By Jonathan Davies

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) says businesses are desperate for reform to the business rates system.

Ahead of the Chancellor George Osborne's Autumn Statement in December, the BRC wrote to The Treasury highlighting the consensus that the business rates system needs to change.

The retail body also called for a statement of intent from the government that it will go beyond the measures already introduced to make the system fairer.

Helen Dickinson, Director General of the British Retail Consortium, said:

“The retail industry’s championing of the need for fundamental reform of business rates is being increasingly amplified by industries as diverse as steel and car manufacturing and some of the country’s largest property companies.

"This is a strong indication that the time is right to set out a roadmap to fundamentally reform the system and make it fit for purpose for the 21st century. We do not have any expectation that this could be fulfilled in advance of the general election but an indication that it will be on the agenda for a future government will resonate very well across British business and facilitate further planning to allow business to play a fuller part in the economic recovery.

“We welcome the fact that Government has placed great emphasis on building business for the future, in supporting small companies and building much needed infrastructure. Going a step further by following the lead of other Member States and introducing domestic interchange fee caps would bring great benefit to consumers.”

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